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  1. Bringing Disgust in Through the Backdoor in Healthy Food Promotion: A Phenomenological Perspective.Bas de Boer & Mailin Lemke - 2021 - Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 24 (4):731-743.
    Obesity has been pointed out as one of the main current health risks leading to calls for a so-called “war on obesity”. As we show in this paper, activities that attempt to counter obesity by persuading people to adjust a specific behavior often employ a pedagogy of regret and disgust. Nowadays, however, public healthcare campaigns that aim to tackle obesity have often replaced or augmented the explicit negative depictions of obesity and/or excessive food intake with the positive promotion of healthy (...)
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  • Sex Differences in Disgust: Why Are Women More Easily Disgusted Than Men?Laith Al-Shawaf, David M. G. Lewis & David M. Buss - 2018 - Emotion Review 10 (2):149-160.
    Women have consistently higher levels of disgust than men. This sex difference is substantial in magnitude, highly replicable, emerges with diverse assessment methods, and affects a wide array of outcomes—including job selection, mate choice, food aversions, and psychological disorders. Despite the importance of this far-reaching sex difference, sound theoretical explanations have lagged behind the empirical discoveries. In this article, we focus on the evolutionary-functional level of analysis, outlining hypotheses capable of explaining why women have higher levels of disgust than men. (...)
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  • The Evolutionary Psychology of Extraterrestrial Intelligence: Are There Universal Adaptations in Search, Aversion, and Signaling?Peter M. Todd & Geoffrey F. Miller - 2018 - Biological Theory 13 (2):131-141.
    To understand the possible forms of extraterrestrial intelligence, we need not only astrobiology theories about how life evolves given habitable planets, but also evolutionary psychology theories about how intelligence emerges given life. Wherever intelligent organisms evolve, they are likely to face similar behavioral challenges in their physical and social worlds. The cognitive mechanisms that arise to meet these challenges may then be copied, repurposed, and shaped by further evolutionary selection to deal with more abstract, higher-level cognitive tasks such as conceptual (...)
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  • Is There Such a Thing as Genuinely Moral Disgust?Mara Bollard - 2021 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 13 (2):501-522.
    In this paper, I defend a novel skeptical view about moral disgust. I argue that much recent discussion of moral disgust neglects an important ontological question: is there a distinctive psychological state of moral disgust that is differentiable from generic disgust, and from other psychological states? I investigate the ontological question and propose two conditions that any aspiring account of moral disgust must satisfy: it must be a genuine form of disgust, and it must be genuinely moral. Next, I examine (...)
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  • The Response Model of Moral Disgust.Alexandra Plakias - 2018 - Synthese 195 (12):5453-5472.
    The philosophical debate over disgust and its role in moral discourse has focused on disgust’s epistemic status: can disgust justify judgments of moral wrongness? Or is it misplaced in the moral domain—irrelevant at best, positively distorting at worst? Correspondingly, empirical research into disgust has focused on its role as a cause or amplifier of moral judgment, seeking to establish how and when disgust either causes us to morally condemn actions, or strengthens our pre-existing tendencies to condemn certain actions. Both of (...)
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  • Control Over Pathogen Exposure and Basal Immunological Activity Influence Disgust and Pathogen-Avoidance Motivation.Hannah Bradshaw, Jeff Gassen, Marjorie Prokosch, Gary Boehm & Sarah Hill - 2022 - Cognition and Emotion 36 (4):568-580.
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  • Human Emotions: An Evolutionary Psychological Perspective.Laith Al-Shawaf, Daniel Conroy-Beam, Kelly Asao & David M. Buss - 2016 - Emotion Review 8 (2):173-186.
    Evolutionary approaches to the emotions have traditionally focused on a subset of emotions that are shared with other species, characterized by distinct signals, and designed to solve a few key adaptive problems. By contrast, an evolutionary psychological approach broadens the range of adaptive problems emotions have evolved to solve, includes emotions that lack distinctive signals and are unique to humans, and synthesizes an evolutionary approach with an information-processing perspective. On this view, emotions are superordinate mechanisms that evolved to coordinate the (...)
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  • Disgust Talked About.Nina Strohminger - 2014 - Philosophy Compass 9 (7):478-493.
    Disgust, the emotion of rotting carcasses and slimy animalitos, finds itself at the center of several critical questions about human culture and cognition. This article summarizes recent developments, identify active points of debate, and provide an account of where the field is heading next.
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  • Author Reply: Grasping the Nebula: Inelegant Theories for Messy Phenomena.Nina Strohminger - 2014 - Emotion Review 6 (3):225-228.
    Grand unified theories of messy topics like emotion tend to fail at capturing all the important dimensions of their subject. Why is this? I take on this question while responding to commentaries.
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  • Contamination Appraisals, Pollution Beliefs, and the Role of Cultural Inheritance in Shaping Disease Avoidance Behavior.Yitzhaq Feder - 2016 - Cognitive Science 40 (6):1561-1585.
    Despite the upsurge of research on disgust, the implications of this research for the investigation of cultural pollution beliefs has yet to be adequately explored. In particular, the sensitivity of both disgust and pollution to a common set of elicitors suggests a common psychological basis, though several obstacles have prevented an integrative account, including methodological differences between the relevant disciplines. Employing a conciliatory framework that embraces both naturalistic and humanistic levels of explanation, this article examines the dynamic reciprocal process by (...)
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  • Contempt and Disgust: The Emotions of Disrespect.Maria Miceli & Cristiano Castelfranchi - 2018 - Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 48 (2):205-229.
    Contempt and disgust share a number of features which distinguish them from other hostile emotions: they both present two distinct facets—a nonmoral facet and a moral one; they both imply a negative evaluation of the dispositional kind as well as disrespect towards the target of the feeling; and they trigger avoidance and exclusion action tendencies. However, while sharing a common core, contempt and disgust are in our view distinct emotions, qualified by different cognitive-motivational features. Contempt is felt exclusively towards human (...)
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  • Investigating Emotions as Functional States Distinct From Feelings.Ralph Adolphs & Daniel Andler - 2018 - Emotion Review 10 (3):191-201.
    We defend a functionalist approach to emotion that begins by focusing on emotions as central states with causal connections to behavior and to other cognitive states. The approach brackets the conscious experience of emotion, lists plausible features that emotions exhibit, and argues that alternative schemes are unpromising candidates. We conclude with the benefits of our approach: one can study emotions in animals; one can look in the brain for the implementation of specific features; and one ends up with an architecture (...)
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  • Cultivating Disgust: Prospects and Moral Implications.Charlie Kurth - 2021 - Emotion Review 13 (2):101-112.
    Is disgust morally valuable? The answer to that question turns, in large part, on what we can do to shape disgust for the better. But this cultivation question has received surprisingly little attention in philosophical debates. To address this deficiency, this article examines empirical work on disgust and emotion regulation. This research reveals that while we can exert some control over how we experience disgust, there’s little we can do to substantively change it at a more fundamental level. These empirical (...)
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  • A Proximal Perspective on Disgust.Richard J. Stevenson, Trevor I. Case, Megan J. Oaten, Lorenzo Stafford & Supreet Saluja - 2019 - Emotion Review 11 (3):209-225.
    The functional basis of disgust in disease avoidance is widely accepted; however, there is disagreement over what disgust is. This is a significant problem, as basic questions about disgust require...
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  • Comment: Scholarly Disgust and Related Mysteries.Joshua Rottman & Liane Young - 2014 - Emotion Review 6 (3):222-223.
    Strohminger is revolted by McGinn’s book, The Meaning of Disgust. We argue that her reaction of repugnance highlights one of the greatest mysteries in the psychology of disgust: this emotion is at times elicited by abstract ideological concerns rather than physical threats of infection or contamination. Here we describe the theoretical challenge of accounting for nonpathogenic disgust elicitors, which include spiritual defilement, violations of the “natural order,” and, apparently, McGinn’s latest publication.
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  • Need for Empirical Recognition.Nina Strohminger - 2015 - Emotion Review 7 (4):383-383.
    The life-in-death theory makes empirical claims, and is therefore subject to empirical verification. Even if this theory were purely analytic or phenomenological, it would be accountable to countervailing empirical evidence. If we cannot use empirical evidence to support or refute this theory, then it cannot be compared with competing theories, which defer to observable reality.
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  • Evolution and Neuroethics in the Hyperion Cantos.Brendan Shea - 2015 - Journal of Cognition and Neuroethics 3 (3).
    In this article, I use science-fiction scenarios drawn from Dan Simmons’ “Hyperion Cantos” (Hyperion, The Fall of Hyperion, Endymion, The Rise of Endymion) to explore a cluster of issues related to the evolutionary history and neural bases of human moral cognition, and the moral desirability of improving our ability to make moral decisions by techniques of neuroengineering. I begin by sketching a picture of what recent research can teach us about the character of human moral psychology, with a particular emphasis (...)
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  • The Association Between Disgust Sensitivity and Negative Attitudes Toward Homosexuality: The Mediating Role of Moral Foundations.Ruile Wang, Qi Yang, Peng Huang, Liyang Sai & Yue Gong - 2019 - Frontiers in Psychology 10.
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  • The Meanings of Disgusting Art.Filippo Contesi - 2016 - Essays in Philosophy 17 (1):68-94.
    It has been recently argued, contrary to the received eighteenth-century view, that disgust is compatible with aesthetic pleasure. According to such arguments, what allows this compatibility is the interest that art appreciators sometimes bestow on the cognitive content of disgust. On this view, the most interesting aspect of this cognitive content is identified in meanings connected with human mortality. The aim of this paper is to show that these arguments are unsuccessful.
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  • How to Debunk Moral Beliefs.Victor Kumar & Joshua May - 2019 - In Jussi Suikkanen & Antti Kauppinen (eds.), Methodology and Moral Philosophy. Routledge. pp. 25-48.
    Arguments attempting to debunk moral beliefs, by showing they are unjustified, have tended to be global, targeting all moral beliefs or a large set of them. Popular debunking arguments point to various factors purportedly influencing moral beliefs, from evolutionary pressures, to automatic and emotionally-driven processes, to framing effects. We show that these sweeping arguments face a debunker’s dilemma: either the relevant factor is not a main basis for belief or it does not render the relevant beliefs unjustified. Empirical debunking arguments (...)
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  • What Sentimentalists Should Say About Emotions.Charlie Kurth - 2019 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 42.
    Recent work by emotion researchers indicates that emotions have a multi-level structure. Sophisticated sentimentalists should take note of this work—for it better enables them to defend a substantive role for emotion in moral cognition. Contra the rationalist criticisms of May 2018, emotions are not only able to carry morally relevant information but can also substantially influence moral judgment and reasoning.
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  • Predicting Regional Variations in Nationalism With Online Expression of Disgust in China.Shuqing Gao, Hao Chen, Kaisheng Lai & Weining Qian - 2021 - Frontiers in Psychology 12.
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  • Jokes Can Fail to Be Funny Because They Are Immoral: The Incompatibility of Emotions.Dong An & Kaiyuan Chen - 2021 - Philosophical Psychology 34 (3):374-396.
    Justin D’Arms and Daniel Jacobson have argued that to evaluate the funniness of a joke based on the consideration of whether it is morally appropriate to feel amused commits the “moralistic fallacy.” We offer a new and empirically informed reply. We argue that there is a way to take morality into consideration without committing this fallacy, that is, it is legitimate to say that for some people, witty but immoral jokes can fail to be funny because they are immoral. In (...)
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  • Considerations of the Proximate Mechanisms and Ultimate Functions of Disgust Will Improve Our Understanding of Cleansing Effects.Joshua M. Tybur & Debra Lieberman - 2021 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 44.
    To understand the consequences of cleansing, Lee and Schwarz favor a grounded procedures perspective over recently developed disgust theory. We believe that this position stems from three errors: interpreting cleansing effects as broader than they are; not detailing the proximate mechanisms underlying disgust; and not detailing adaptive function versus system byproducts when developing the grounded procedures perspective.
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  • Grounded Procedures: A Proximate Mechanism for the Psychology of Cleansing and Other Physical Actions.Spike W. S. Lee & Norbert Schwarz - 2021 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 44:1-78.
    Experimental work has revealed causal links between physical cleansing and various psychological variables. Empirically, how robust are they? Theoretically, how do they operate? Major prevailing accounts focus on morality or disgust, capturing a subset of cleansing effects, but cannot easily handle cleansing effects in non-moral, non-disgusting contexts. Building on grounded views on cognitive processes and known properties of mental procedures, we propose grounded procedures of separation as a proximate mechanism underlying cleansing effects. This account differs from prevailing accounts in terms (...)
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  • Investigating the Replicability and Boundary Conditions of the Mnemonic Advantage for Disgust.John T. West & Neil W. Mulligan - forthcoming - Cognition and Emotion:1-21.
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  • Exploring the Motivation Behind Discrimination and Stigmatization Related to COVID-19: A Social Psychological Discussion Based on the Main Theoretical Explanations.H. Andaç Demirtaş-Madran - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11.
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  • Background Odors Modulate N170 ERP Component and Perception of Emotional Facial Stimuli.Elmeri Syrjänen, Stefan Wiens, Håkan Fischer, Marta Zakrzewska, Andreas Wartel, Maria Larsson & Jonas K. Olofsson - 2018 - Frontiers in Psychology 9.
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  • The Inclusive Behavioral Immune System.Keren Shakhar - 2019 - Frontiers in Psychology 10.
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  • Dynamic Displays Enhance the Ability to Discriminate Genuine and Posed Facial Expressions of Emotion.Shushi Namba, Russell S. Kabir, Makoto Miyatani & Takashi Nakao - 2018 - Frontiers in Psychology 9.
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  • Body Odor Disgust Sensitivity Predicts Moral Harshness Toward Moral Violations of Purity.Marco Tullio Liuzza, Jonas K. Olofsson, Sebastian Cancino-Montecinos & Torun Lindholm - 2019 - Frontiers in Psychology 10.
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  • Pathogens and Immigrants: A Critical Appraisal of the Behavioral Immune System as an Explanation of Prejudice Against Ethnic Outgroups.Isabel Kusche & Jessica L. Barker - 2019 - Frontiers in Psychology 10.
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  • Enhancing Psychological Sexual Health of People With Spinal Cord Injury and Their Partners in an Italian Unipolar Spinal Unit: A Pilot Data Study.Stefano Federici, Francesco Artegiani, Martina Pigliautile, Paolo Antonelli, Daniele Diotallevi, Innocenza Ritacco & Renée Maschke - 2019 - Frontiers in Psychology 10.
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  • Implicit Attitude Toward Caregiving: The Moderating Role of Adult Attachment Styles.Pietro De Carli, Angela Tagini, Diego Sarracino, Alessandra Santona & Laura Parolin - 2015 - Frontiers in Psychology 6.
  • Understanding Emotion Inflexibility in Risk for Affective Disease: Integrating Current Research and Finding a Path Forward.Karin G. Coifman & Christopher B. Summers - 2019 - Frontiers in Psychology 10.
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  • Thinking Through Other Minds: A Variational Approach to Cognition and Culture.Samuel P. L. Veissière, Axel Constant, Maxwell J. D. Ramstead, Karl J. Friston & Laurence J. Kirmayer - 2020 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 43:1-97.
    The processes underwriting the acquisition of culture remain unclear. How are shared habits, norms, and expectations learned and maintained with precision and reliability across large-scale sociocultural ensembles? Is there a unifying account of the mechanisms involved in the acquisition of culture? Notions such as “shared expectations,” the “selective patterning of attention and behaviour,” “cultural evolution,” “cultural inheritance,” and “implicit learning” are the main candidates to underpin a unifying account of cognition and the acquisition of culture; however, their interactions require greater (...)
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  • The Distancing-Embracing Model of the Enjoyment of Negative Emotions in Art Reception.Winfried Menninghaus, Valentin Wagner, Julian Hanich, Eugen Wassiliwizky, Thomas Jacobsen & Stefan Koelsch - 2017 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 40:1-58.
    Why are negative emotions so central in art reception far beyond tragedy? Revisiting classical aesthetics in the light of recent psychological research, we present a novel model to explain this much discussed paradox. We argue that negative emotions are an important resource for the arts in general, rather than a special license for exceptional art forms only. The underlying rationale is that negative emotions have been shown to be particularly powerful in securing attention, intense emotional involvement, and high memorability, and (...)
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  • An Orderly Personality Partially Explains the Link Between Trait Disgust and Political Conservatism.Xiaowen Xu, Annika K. Karinen, Hanah A. Chapman, Jordan B. Peterson & Jason E. Plaks - 2019 - Cognition and Emotion 34 (2):302-315.
    Individuals who are more easily disgusted tend to be more politically conservative. Individuals who have a preference for order also tend to be more politically conservative. In the present researc...
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  • Folk Beliefs About the Relationships Anger and Disgust Have with Moral Disapproval.Jared Piazza & Justin F. Landy - 2019 - Cognition and Emotion 34 (2):229-241.
    Theories that view emotions as being related in some way to moral judgments suggest that condemning moral emotions should, at a minimum, be understood by laypeople to coincide with judgments of mor...
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  • Emotions as Guardians of Group Norms: Expressions of Anger and Disgust Drive Inferences About Autonomy and Purity Violations.Marc W. Heerdink, Lukas F. Koning, Evert A. van Doorn & Gerben A. van Kleef - 2018 - Cognition and Emotion 33 (3):563-578.
    ABSTRACTOther people’s emotional reactions to a third person’s behaviour are potentially informative about what is appropriate within a given situation. We investigated whether and how observers’ inferences of such injunctive norms are shaped by expressions of anger and disgust. Building on the moral emotions literature, we hypothesised that angry and disgusted expressions produce relative differences in the strength of autonomy-based versus purity-based norm inferences. We report three studies using different types of stimuli to investigate how emotional reactions shape norms about (...)
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  • Sex Differences in Attention to Disgust Facial Expressions.Morganne A. Kraines, Lucas J. A. Kelberer & Tony T. Wells - 2017 - Cognition and Emotion 31 (8):1692-1697.
    Research demonstrates that women experience disgust more readily and with more intensity than men. The experience of disgust is associated with increased attention to disgust-related stimuli, but no prior study has examined sex differences in attention to disgust facial expressions. We hypothesised that women, compared to men, would demonstrate increased attention to disgust facial expressions. Participants completed an eye tracking task to measure visual attention to emotional facial expressions. Results indicated that women spent more time attending to disgust facial expressions (...)
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  • Skin-Transmitted Pathogens and the Heebie Jeebies: Evidence for a Subclass of Disgust Stimuli That Evoke a Qualitatively Unique Emotional Response.Khandis R. Blake, Jennifer Yih, Kun Zhao, Billy Sung & Cindy Harmon-Jones - 2017 - Cognition and Emotion 31 (6):1153-1168.
    Skin-transmitted pathogens have threatened humans since ancient times. We investigated whether skin-transmitted pathogens were a subclass of disgust stimuli that evoked an emotional response that was related to, but distinct from, disgust and fear. We labelled this response “the heebie jeebies”. In Study 1, coding of 76 participants’ experiences of disgust, fear, and the heebie jeebies showed that the heebie jeebies was elicited by unique stimuli which produced skin-crawling sensations and an urge to protect the skin. In Experiment 2,350 participants’ (...)
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  • The English Word Disgust has No Exact Translation in Hindi or Malayalam.Dolichan Kollareth & James A. Russell - 2017 - Cognition and Emotion 31 (6):1169-1180.
    Do different languages have a translation for the English word disgust that labels the same underlying concept? If not, the English word might label a culture-specific concept. Four studies compared disgust to its common translation in Hindi and in Malayalam by examining two components of the concept thought of as a script: causal antecedent and facial expression. The English word was used to refer to reactions to both unclean substances and moral violations; Hindi and Malayalam translations referred mainly to moral (...)
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  • Animals as Disgust Elicitors.T. J. Kasperbauer - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (2):167-185.
    This paper attempts to explain how and why nonhuman animals elicit disgust in human beings. I argue that animals elicit disgust in two ways. One is by triggering disease–protection mechanisms, and the other is by eliciting mortality salience, or thoughts of death. I discuss how these two types of disgust operate and defend their conceptual and theoretical coherence against common objections. I also outline an explanatory challenge for disgust researchers. Both types of disgust indicate that a wide variety of animals (...)
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  • Self-Ownership and Disgust: Why Compulsory Body Part Redistribution Gets Under Our Skin.Christopher Freiman & Adam Lerner - 2015 - Philosophical Studies 172 (12):3167-3190.
    The self-ownership thesis asserts, roughly, that agents own their minds and bodies in the same way that they can own extra-personal property. One common strategy for defending the self-ownership thesis is to show that it accords with our intuitions about the wrongness of various acts involving the expropriation of body parts. We challenge this line of defense. We argue that disgust explains our resistance to these sorts of cases and present results from an original psychological experiment in support of this (...)
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  • Disgust Lowers Olfactory Threshold: A Test of the Underlying Mechanism.Kai Qin Chan, Roel van Dooren, Rob W. Holland & Ad van Knippenberg - 2019 - Cognition and Emotion 34 (3):621-627.
    ABSTRACTThe olfactory system provides us with rich information about the world, but the odours around us are not always detectable. Previous research has shown that disgust enhances olfactory sensi...
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  • Butchering Benevolence Moral Progress Beyond the Expanding Circle.Hanno Sauer - 2019 - Ethical Theory and Moral Practice 22 (1):153-167.
    Standard evolutionary explanations seem unable to account for inclusivist shifts that expand the circle of moral concern beyond strategically relevant cooperators. Recently, Allen Buchanan and Russell Powell have argued that this shows that that evolutionary conservatism – the view that our inherited psychology imposes significant feasibility constraints on how much inclusivist moral progress can be achieved – is unjustified. Secondly, they hold that inclusivist gains can be sustained, and exclusivist tendencies curbed, under certain favorable socio-economic conditions. I argue that Buchanan (...)
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  • Is It Disgusting to Be Reminded That You Are an Animal?Dolichan Kollareth & James A. Russell - 2017 - Cognition and Emotion 31 (7):1318-1332.
    Six studies tested the hypothesis that being reminded of our animal nature makes us feel disgust. Participants from three cultural groups indicated the intensity of their disgust reactions to pleasant and unpleasant animal reminder stories and pictures as well as to a statement directly reminding them of their animal nature. Findings did not support the hypothesis: Pleasant animal reminders reminded respondents of their animal nature, but were not disgusting. The direct reminder of our animal nature was not disgusting. There was (...)
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  • Neural Correlates of the Perception of Spoiled Food Stimuli.Christoph A. Becker, Tobias Flaisch, Britta Renner & Harald T. Schupp - 2016 - Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 10.
  • The Self in Moral Judgement: How Self-Affirmation Affects the Moral Condemnation of Harmless Sexual Taboo Violations.Marlon Mooijman & Wilco W. Van Dijk - 2015 - Cognition and Emotion 29 (7):1326-1334.